The annual conference and exhibition of the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) hits the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans for five days, beginning Feb. 4.

Some 18,000 attendees are expected to venture to this year’s event, which will feature more than 175 educational sessions and more than 600 exhibitors. For the second year, HIMSS — like its organizational colleague, the Radiological Society of North America (Chicago) — will present progress to-date on the Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise (IHE) project. IHE demonstrations will take place Feb. 5 to 8.

Exhibitor highlights
On the exhibit floor, A.L.I. Technologies Inc. (ALI of Richmond, British Columbia, Canada) will showcase enhancements to its ALI UltraPACS (picture archiving and communications system) image review software, which includes extended cine playback tools, 3D viewing tools, sophisticated display protocols and advanced search features. New applications include an image capture system, which is housed in a compact chassis, and ALI UltraPACS AnyWare, a remote review workstation that provides the same tools as a full-featured hospital PACS workstation.

Agfa Corp. (Ridgefield Park, N.J.) will show PACSWatch2, a continuous, remote, proactive PACS monitoring and system information product that offers automatic fault detection, isolation and escalation to enhance PACS reliability.

Agfa also will debut its first Quadrat RIS-integrated Impax — the result of parent company Agfa-Gevaert Group’s (Mortsel, Belgium) purchase of an equity stake in PACS software developer Quadrat N.V. (Duerle, Belgium).

Agfa's ADC Compact CR SystemThe company will display its new family of ADC-QS products as part of the IHE demonstration. The QS system works with Agfa’s ADC Solo and ADC Compact (left) computerized radiography (CR) systems. The system can be used as a single CR QC/Review workstation, expanded to include remote workstations with full CR image QC/Review functions and further linked to a system-wide PACS.

Agilent Technologies Inc.’s (Palo Alto, Calif.) Healthcare Solutions Group (Andover, Mass.) will highlight the Lumedx Apollo32 cardiology data management solution. Apollo32 automatically gathers and merges data, including confirmed waveforms and images throughout an entire cardiology department.

It also provides a variety of intelligent tools, which can be used to analyze the patient data for clinical research, outcomes studies, financial analysis and multimodality clinical reports. It enables data from disparate sources within the hospital to be brought together in one database, giving the cardiologist easy, point-of-care access to all of the cardiac information on an individual patient.

Cerner Corp. (Kansas City, Mo.) will show the integration of imaging into RadNet, Cerner’s radiology information system. This offering is one of the first fruits of Cerner’s acquisition of the majority of ADAC Laboratories Inc.’s Health Care Information Systems (Houston) division.

With the seamless integration of imaging into Cerner’s HNA Millennium, as well as integrated voice recognition and digital dictation, Cerner is looking to provide information management throughout the entire healthcare continuum.

The ASP factor
On-site application service provider (ASP) Amicas (Newton, Mass.) will unveil its fourth generation of its RAID-centric image-management system. Enhancements include a just-in-time delivery system designed to make images always available for immediate access.

Comdisco Inc. (Chicago, Ill.), plans to show its Storage and Access Management Services, a new suite of information management services designed to offer healthcare providers secure storage, access and distribution of their digital images. Comdisco will plan, build, manage and evolve hosted storage environments for customers’ digital images. Availability, data protection and recovery services will be integrated into the solutions and delivered through Comdisco’s in-place, worldwide infrastructure of 48 technology service centers, connected to providers by a secure, high-speed network proactively managed through Comdisco’s network operating center.

Eastman Kodak Co.’s (Rochester, N.Y.) Cemax-Icon unit will demonstrate enhancements to its workstations, which are now based on the Windows NT operating system. The AutoRad primary diagnostic workstation offers customized hanging protocols for each user, bookmarks and side-by-side paging to optimize efficiency and accuracy in viewing comparative studies. The clinical workstation also enables radiologists and clinicians to share data as part of a single work group.
New services from Emageon (Birmingham, Ala.) will have their first public showing at HIMSS 2001. Emageon’s new Enterprise Archive Manager 2.0 software employs multiprotocol, multilayered optimization streaming technology to maximize server performance and features DICOM object versioning and a new administration GUI (graphical user interface; pronounced gooey).

The new Workflow Suite 1.0 integrates two components — the DICOM cache and Rule-based Routing. The company also anticipates the release of two additional components — Rule-based Prefetching and General Purpose Worklist.

Please refer to the February 2001 issue for the complete story. For information on article reprints, contact Martin St. Denis